No One Is An Island

Today, I thought I’d write a little about my writing background. A few things have prompted this. I’ve read a lot of wonderful blogs over the weekend and I noticed how most of these blogs have one thing in common; the writers have shared a part of themselves. A personal part.

I was watching Stephen Fry’s Planet Word last night (which I do every Sunday night) and to my delight, the topic was on authors, literature and ye olde storytelling. There was an interesting interview between Stephen and Peter Jackson (director of The Lord of the Rings trilogies, the King Kong remake….) and they were discussing the works of Stephen King. What struck a chord with me was Jackson’s explanation of the differences between bringing a character to life as opposed to creating a character. He believes that King isn’t afraid to delve deep within the evil recesses of his own mind to use as a base for one of his psychopathic characters. He doesn’t just ‘create’ a character. He gives birth to one. A character which the reader can identify with, perhaps recognising parts of themselves within their own personality.

This interview got me thinking about all of us bloggers. Yes, we can write entertaining posts about how writer’s block sucks or that we had a tremendous awe-inspiring earth shattering light bulb moment while sweeping the floor. But what is it that truly connects us to other people? Personal stories with emotion. Depth. Feeling.  Being able to relate to one another because lets face it, no person is an island.

And on that thought I will segue into what I want to share with you today. No one is an island. That phrase really does resonate with me because I sometimes feel like an island.

I am an only child and there weren’t a lot of cousins in my family. It seems like my mother’s relatives all chose to have no more than 3 kids each and even that was stretching it. Not all of them even had children. This is the family I grew up with. On the other hand, my father’s family in Brazil is extremely big. Jam packed with cousins, second cousins, children of those second cousins…..But I didn’t pine for that.

What I pined for was close friends. Unfortunately I didn’t have many growing up. This is because I went to 8 different schools – 6 in primary and 2 in high school. That is because my parents moved around quite a bit. By the time I was 17, I had lived in 11 different houses in 11 different suburbs. So to say I don’t have roots is an understatement. But that’s not the problem. I didn’t mind changing schools. In fact, I looked forward to it because it meant new beginnings, meeting new people and experiencing new things. My mother says I always faced that first day at school with gusto and confidence.

But deep down I always longed for friends that knew me, that ‘got’ me because they knew me. I was always the new kid, there was never any familiarity and as a child I craved the stability that close friends give you. So how did I overcome this problem? I started to write. Writing as a means of escape? You bet your sweet dollar. I was creating worlds…I was playing God. I created scenarios where I was the popular girl. Where I controlled the outcome. Where I was the boss.

The worlds I brought into my imagined existence were fun, with lots of laughter, lots of sleepovers, lots of girly talk. Oh and boyfriends! I had boyfriends because boys actually got to know me. Obviously I was always the central character – how could I not be?

As I got older and discovered that I had a passion and ability to create worlds whatever the circumstance, my angst was redirected to journals but I continued to write stories that had a little more depth to them. Again, I was the central character but this time around I had adult problems to face. And I always lived in New York. In a loft. Always.

Those who know me well know that I don’t shy away from my emotions. I wear my heart on my sleeve; really, I don’t have anything to hide. If there is one thing that the human race has in common it’s this. Emotions. Every single person has emotions – how we choose to demonstrate them is up to the individual but all of us can relate to one another because of this one common denominator.

After all, isn’t it within our primitive nature to relate? The pack mentality. Truly, no one is an island.

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About Virginia

Writer, reader, crossword puzzler and conspiracy theorist.

7 Responses to “No One Is An Island”

  1. Hey B
    Just wanted to let u know that I am really enjoying your blogs – u write so well and with passion and conviction. Was just re reading your article on site stats and have to admit to being a bit obsessive about that myself and wanting to increase my own readership was wondering if you got anything specifically useful from your responses? How many followers do u have now?
    Keep up the good writing lots of love me x

    Like

    • Thanks B, Im so pleased you’re liking my blog. It means so much to me. You’re blog is always entertaining and insightful, Im always laughing out loud!

      I have 95 followers, 32 of those are from facebook but if you look around at other blogs you’ll find that everyone says the same thing re increasing numbers and stats – comment on other blogs. What I do if I find a blog I like, I make sure to comment instead of just clicking on the like button. I get to know other bloggers. Like networking, schmoozing, that kind of thing. And one of my followers told me that he uses twitter a lot too. I’ve yet to figure out how to use it properly tho! I guess it would mean the same; networking and putting your blog out there.

      Thanks for your support hun xxxxx

      Like

  2. Terrific post today. Probably one of the frankest ‘this is why…’ reads I have come across. Thanks for sharing it. Moving around so much sounds pretty interesting. I stayed put in the same place for the first 22 years, then wandered around for ten years in the same general area, before settling down (albeit part of a long term plan). Imagination helped take me beyond the backyard into space, or the steamy jungles of South America. Big imaginations come from situations like yours and mine. Letting it come out in stories is really, kind of awesome.

    Like

    • Thanks, appreciate it 🙂 I think I’ll be doing a few more raw posts like these, like I mentioned in the post, I tend to wear my heart on my sleeve. When people see honesty they tend to respond with honesty, and I think thats important when blogging.

      Im really thankful for my childhood, actually. Moving for me is very cathartic, even to this day I love it and it excites me. It opens up a world of new possibilities, gets the creative juices flowing.

      Like

  3. This was a great post! I can relate in many ways… I often feel like an island, but not so much since I’ve begun blogging. There really is a sense of camaraderie here. And I also long for friends who “get” me, but people often don’t until I’ve written to them. Being shy, this is just the way I open up to people. It takes a long time to get to know me by talking to me… and so I write. 🙂 This is my comfortable world.

    Like

    • I see what you mean. I’m not a shy person but when I write to friends my emails are very very long, the written word for me is my license to say whatever I want – no censoring!

      Like

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  1. Challenge Day 6; Answer A Question: My WIP and Why I Write « Poeta Officium - May 14, 2012

    […] wrote this post, No One Is An Island about moving through many schools during my childhood which I believe contributed to my writing. […]

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